The only total solar eclipse of 2020 crossed parts of Chile and Argentina on Monday afternoon, December 14, plunging the region into total darkness for a few minutes in the middle of the day. 

Thousands of international visitors were expected in Chile to view the astronomical phenomenon. Argentina, however, kept its borders closed due to the coronavirus pandemic. 

While skywatchers enjoyed the spectacular celestial event in Argentina, those in Chile faced disappointment as clouds and rain obscured the sky. 

A total solar eclipse occurs when the moon fully blocks the sun, creating temporary daylight darkness on Earth. The next total solar eclipse is due December 4, 2021.